Richard Mayon-White and his 21 ft (6.5m) yacht Haskapa have now spent 24 days at sea since leaving Gibraltar on 26th October, plus a few more in La Gomera in the Canaries where he had to put in for repairs. Richard blogs “I’ve just passed the halfway point on the transatlantic leg of my voyage! So it's hopefully downhill from here to Antigua!!!”
Richard is following the Tropic of Cancer solo in his mini transat yacht to raise money for Sail 4 Cancer half of which will go to the Sobell House Hospice in Oxford. As he counts down the days to arriving in Antigua he has announced that he has decided to sell the yacht when he reaches the Caribbean island and plans to give any profits over £10,000 to a local charity there.
Richard added “ “The daily routine revolves around sunrise and sunset. “As I'm not racing, and because for me it's a marathon not a sprint, I tend to run the boat differently during the day and during the night! At sunrise, I first get the solar panels aligned to catch the first rays of sun in order to recharge the batteries, then add some more sail area.”
Sunday Richard was less than 1000 miles from Antigua, although suffering with slow progress in flat calm. However, he is now into the really hard period of managing expectations around arrival dates. There are more light patches predicted for next weekend, which may see him slow right down again tantalisingly close to the finish.
While wind speeds of 20-25 knots had helped Richard along in the middle of last week, light variable winds returned to hamper progress over the weekend. After light winds on Saturday, the wind disappeared overnight, and Haskapa drifted along, propelled only by the residual ground swell waves from the North East. Richard said “These patches of light and zero wind are mentally and emotionally hard, with very slow progress and a fight to take advantage of what breeze there is. There is no real escape from the heat either - on deck and in the cabin are equally stifling,”
Richard, an experienced ocean sailor and rower, is aiming to raise £40,000 to be split equally between two great causes, the Sobell House Hospice in Oxford and the national charity Sail 4 Cancer, which gives respite to cancer sufferers and their families through days out on the water and sailing holidays. He is already more than half way to achieving that sum.
Richard's progress can be tracked by logging onto his website Tropice4Cancer and clicking on "Live Tracking".
To donate visit Tropice4Cancer and click on "Donate".